Breaking a Social Norm

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Breaking a Social Norm

By | December 2010
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Breaking a social norm

In our society we have a number of society norms that we abide by. For example, there is an unwritten rule of how one should behave in an elevator. For example, it is proper to face front, stand away from strangers, and not to look at others. When a social norm is broken people may respond with alarm, humor, fear, irritation, or an array of other emotions. When you think of a norm, you are probably thinking about being normal. But in psychology terms, norm means, a standard or representative value for a group. The norm that is more common to people is a social norm. Meaning expectations about what behavior, thoughts, or feelings are appropriate within a given group within a given context. In society today us as people decide what is normal and abnormal. I surveyed five people and asked them two questions of what they thought was normal and abnormal. The first question was “Do you think dressing weird out in the public eye is normal”? There response were “No, because everybody does that anyway.” My next question was, “Does being rude to an elder normal?” There response was “ No, you have to give respect to older people.” Well, I did this survey to get an idea on what people thought of what was normal and what wasn’t. This survey also helped me chose a norm to break. When I broke the norms I actually broke two and didn’t even know it until I was done with my acting. The two social norms that I broke were, wearing pajamas to the movie theatre with my boyfriend and being rude to authority such as elders. When my boyfriend picked me up for the movies, he just looked at me strangely. I know he wanted to ask why did I have on pajamas but he just kept quiet. By the way I did bring a extra pair of clothes with me, so I wouldn’t look like an idiot that whole night. Well anyway, on our way to the movies, my boyfriend just kept staring at me, but mind you he never said a word. When we went to get the tickets I received many looks from people and...
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